This year has been a great year for examining my life and figure out what was working, what was not working, and making changes to increase my overall enjoyment and satisfaction.
There have been a number of creative firsts this yar, perhaps more than in recent years:
- coaching a rock band of teenagers
- playing piano for music comedy improv
- doing a 365-day blogging project
- doing a weekly podcast video/recording (well, for several months at least… I put that down, at least temporarily, a few weeks ago)
- taking improv comedy classes
The latest item to add to the list: performing as church cantor. Today I sang at a Catholic church mass in honor of one of my former students, who passed away recently. I played “Clair de Lune” to honor her, as this was one of her favorite pieces and her daughter requested it. In addition, I led the congregration (being anyone in the crowd who chose to pick up their hymnal and sing along) in “Amazing Grace” and “O Come Emmanuel” at the beginning and the end of the ceremony. I also sang short musical interludes at various points.
Today’s first reminds me of what I love about being a musician. I love the variety of musical experiences I get to have. As a pianist, over the years I have been:
- rock keyboardist for a band
- hip hop keyboardist for a hip hop show
- solo pianist for my own solo show
- classical pianist
- musical director
- piano teacher
- improvising keyboardist for comedy troupe
It’s fun to learn music from so many different directions. To me, this is one of the perks of being a lifer in this industry: you end up having a lot of different types of opportunities.
On a related note, over the next few weeks, I have several different gigs, in which to some extent I will continue my game of musical hats:
- a gig playing keyboard at the airport
- a TV appearance playing Holiday tunes
- accompanist for a high school choir
- keyboardist for Improvised Musical Comedy
The fun continues in a year of firsts! (How about you? What firsts have you had this year? None, you say? Well, it’s not too late! The year ain’t over! What are you waiting for?)